An incomprehension of time

Escher clock

Stop for a second and think about how much time plots your day.

Now stop another second and remember that time doesn’t exist.

Yet time tells us when to wake up. When to go to work. When to eat. When to sleep. When to leave the house. When to be in a rush. When to relax and just live.

Time is just a notion invented to structure our lives. And for the most part, we follow it unquestioningly.

Without time, how would we manage? Would it be chaos or would we continue along like we’ve always done? Even before the invention of clocks nailed down “exact” time humankind was controlled by it. The revolution of the Earth around the sun dictated the time for humans to eat, sleep, and work.

As we evolved, so did time. It got more exact, more detailed, more minute (pardon the pun). We watched it sift through as sand, watched it swing by in the form of pendulums. Even now, we carry it with us on our wrists, in our pockets, on our mobile phones. We’re never more than arm’s length or a quick glance or a turn of the wrist toward time.

And it’s so hard to resist checking what time it is.  (It’s 11:26 p.m. Mountain time right now as I type, if you’re wondering.)

Amazing how much of our lives we dedicate to something that doesn’t exist.


1 Comment

  1. Seconds, minutes, hours etc might be concepts designed to help us organise our lives, but time itself hasn’t just been made up. Time is a direct consequence of the second law of thermodynamics (which is a natural law), and it is beautifully woven into the fabric of space-time in Einsteins theory of general relativity.

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